Dealing with discomfort from braces

It’s a universal truth that anyone who has braces will experience some form of discomfort, however minor this may be. For most people, thankfully, any discomfort is short lived and is easily made comfortable, but for some there can be difficult periods wearing braces – especially in the case of adults.

The best way to deal with any discomfort is to prevent it happening in the first place.

When wearing braces, the soreness of the teeth is caused by a process called inflammation. Inflammation is caused by a series of events that trigger the next response. Pain control for inflammation works by interfering with these events, which in turn reduces the swelling and soreness. A good pain reliever for braces is Ibuprofen – this is because it is anti-inflammatory. However, it is much more effective when taken early before pain starts. So if you know you’re having a brace fitted or adjusted, take some Ibuprofen before your appointment so it’s ready and working when you need it.

Other issues that patients have to deal with, is irritation of the inner parts of the lips and cheeks. They often feel chaffed and sore, especially when the patient is eating or talking. Eventually the mouth “hardens up” to this, but in the early stages using something like Bonjella or Iglu to help soothe the area can bring relief. Sometimes the rubbing is a bit more severe and if not dealt with properly an ulcer will form. The best solution for this is simply to place something over the part of the brace that is rubbing – this will prevent it causing an ulcer. There are several good products for this that your orthodontist can provide.

The main thing to remember is that any pain or discomfort will get better, so be patient and keep thinking about that fantastic straight smile you’ll have at the end of treatment – it’s definitely worth it.

Paula

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